Year One Down

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So we officially made it through our first year of homeschooling.

Let me tell you, saying you plan on homeschooling, and actually doing so, are two completely different things. I’m not sure I fully realized what I was getting myself into until it was too late, ha.

But trust me, I’d do it all over again. Obviously. Because this year I will have two being schooled.

Fortunately for me, I’m super unschooly, so it made things easy this year. J loathes the term “unschool” because he says people associate it to watching TV all day as opposed to a belief that children can lead their education into the directions of their interests.

We used a formal reading curriculum. It’s important to me that they learn to read properly, at an age appropriate time (not aged 5, unless they’re truly ready on their own, but somewhere between ages 6-8, when they’re naturally ready). We did a few lessons here and there from All About Reading, but didn’t get serious about it until the end of April. She plowed through it like nobody’s business and I cannot wait to start the next level with her, as well as All About Spelling.

Because H was technically kindergarten aged this year, and she had done half-day kindy the year before, I didn’t feel compelled to be too overly ambitious with her. Which turned out to be a good things, because the last 6 weeks of my pregnancy did me in, and about the first 12 weeks after sweet M was born we did nada in terms of actual school.

So what else did we do for the school year?

Well, the two absolute most important things was that she PLAY and that I READ to her. I pushed H and B out the back door nearly every day for some free range play in the yard . I think there is very little in life more important than kids being outside and being able to play unhindered from their parents. I definitely value this as an infinitely important part of their homeschooling.

And it should go without saying that there isn’t much more you can do to help your child’s education than to read to them. And then to read some more. And right when you think you might go absolutely hoarse, or possibly insane from reading the same book 20 times in one day, read a little more.

She helped me cook daily. She helped do the math to double recipes, to add up how many 1/3 cups we needed to get 2 cups of flour. We did science experiments like they were going out of style. Okay, okay, J mostly did the science experiments with the kids. The really cool ones anyway. They built things with hammers and nails, painted pictures, wrote her own stories. She got her groove on in dance class, gymnastics, and soccer. Practiced her piano every day. We read so, so much about Paris because she’s obsessed. And we read so much about dinosaurs because he’s obsessed. We counted snails and baby diapers.

We discussed the miracle of childbirth until I was nearly miracled out. We watched so many videos on YouTube about it. And then she got to put her hands on her baby brother’s body and help him enter the world. You can’t really top that.

So I’d say all in all, we had a super successful first year of homeschooling. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for us!

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